Bible Verses That Brought Peace Of Mind In My Life
This blog post is a little different than the usual ones.
I am going to take you on a journey of my life, at its various points, of how certain bible verses helped me and encouraged me with peace to get through each of those times. My hope is that these bible verses would be an encouragement to you and speak light into your soul. May you experience the same peace that I had experienced during each of your trying times.
Let's start at the beginning.
I was raised a devout Buddhist in a family with uncle who was a Buddhist monk and extended family who were Buddhist nuns. By age 3 I was taught and raised to chant Buddhist scriptures and prayers for at least an hour each night. Throughout my teens I never knew about God or Jesus even though there were people who tried to share it with me, I didn't understand it then. It wasn't until I was 18 years old that I truly believed in Jesus Christ and accepted his saving grace. It was after I listened to a sermon in Eden-Bible Presbyterian Church in Singapore when the pastor preached about how Jesus came to save us all and why we needed Jesus to save us from our sins. Tears poured from my eyes during the sermon, I could not stop crying. I was very touched by what Jesus did for me and I realized my great need and my depravity in sin.
My younger sister then was already a Christian before me a few years ago. We were both the only Christians in our family.
As being a Christian in a traditional Buddhist Chinese family then meant to some Chinese that one is being unfilial to the parents and giving up on the roots, it is seen as a Western religion (even though it's roots were Middle Eastern). They see it as being unfilial because parents expect the children to pray Buddhist prayers for them or do a Buddhist ceremony for them when they die. Being a Christian meant that the child would not be doing those, among giving up the traditional Buddhist rituals. Thus we both experienced persecution. We would not dare to pray aloud in our rooms and we would read our bible secretly. We would go to church on Sundays secretly.
Peace When Persecuted For Believing In Jesus
Just when I got home one day, I was confronted with, "So are you a Christian now?!" I said, "Yes.". A forceful slap went right across my face and curses were thrown at me. I cried of course, and in the shower, I prayed to Jesus to help me and comfort me. The bible verse during that time in the shower that spoke to me and brought me peace in the midst of pain was the following:
10 Blessed are those who have been persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven. 11 Blessed are you when people reproach you, persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely, for my sake. 12 Rejoice, and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven. For that is how they persecuted the prophets who were before you. (Matthew 5:10-12)
That verse brought me a lot of comfort and peace, as God was speaking to me that even though I was not accepted in the family at that time, he had still accepted me and he would reward me greatly for it.
Peace When Worried For My Family's Salvation
I pressed on. During those years of persecution, I would get beaten for refusing to pray to their Buddhist idols on Chinese New Year Eve, which was a tradition since I was young. The most painful part was not the physical beatings, it was the experience of being treated harshly like a scum because of my faith in Jesus. However, my church friends and Christian friends encouraged me to pray for my parents and family. This bible verse belong brought me hope in those times.
They said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household.” (Acts 16:31)
The idea of my family accepting the salvation of Jesus at that point was a far off dream then. I started praying for my family's salvation since then. And since those years passed. My parents hearts have softened towards the gospel. My mom is more open to it and I was able to share the gospel to her a few years after I was a Christian. She nodded her head and said okay, though she continued to be a Buddhist. About 6 years after I became a Christian, my parents were open to going to my church, they attended it a couple times and they even encouraged me to go! They later on also encouraged me to share the gospel to my younger brother and they were hoping he would become a Christian too. There was peace in the house. Even though they are still Buddhists and not yet Christians, nor have they gone on to put their faith in Jesus, my sister and I are still praying for them regularly and hoping for them to give their hearts to Jesus one day.
Peace When A Relationship Ended
I have been through breakups when I was dating. During each of those times I would always be very sad for quite a while. There were even times my heart ached so much that I could feel it hurting throughout the day. I had asked God to give me hope to live on. It was a painful breakup, as much to me, as I believe it was to the guy. But we both know it was the right thing to do. We were not suitable for each other as we have discovered. We have different values and different priorities. We were unequally yoked. We know that we are pursuing different goals in life. To continue on in our relationship meant we will both suffer in the long run. During those times, these bible verses brought me peace in knowing it was the right decision.
2 Don’t be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what is the good, well-pleasing, and perfect will of God. (Romans 12:1–2)
3 Do two walk together, unless they have agreed? (Amos 3:3)
30 Therefore The LORD, the God of Israel, says, “˜I said indeed that your house and the house of your father should walk before me forever.” But now The LORD says, “Far be it from me; for those who honor me I will honor, and those who despise me will be cursed.” (1 Samuel 2:30)
Peace After Repenting From Backsliding
I had backslided as a Christian too. Backsliding can happen to any Christian. Looking back, I think it happened after I suffered a sudden traumatic event where I was kicked multiple times onto the floor by someone though it was unprovoked and for no rational reason. (That person much later on eventually cried and asked for my forgiveness). I think my faith in God was heavily tested during that time. I took my eyes off from God and I went far from God. During that time, I could only blame myself for not trusting God enough and seeking comfort from worldly things. It was during that period when I was backsliding, that my parents got worried about me. They saw the dramatic change in me from being a Christian to someone they don't recognize as I was smoking and doing things I usually do not do. They encouraged me to go back to church as they remembered how I was a living a better life when I was living out my faith more. I still tried to read my bible at times during those days. Something in me still desire for God then. The bible is amazing and the more I read it again, the more I went back into it.
It was during one heartbreaking night when I called my Christian mentor, "Uncle Chris" (he's not related to me, but we call older people Uncles and Aunties). I told him why I was different the past months, and I confessed to him all about my backsliding and the wrong decisions made then. He encouraged me on the phone at that time to read and pray Psalm 51 slowly. This Psalm brought a lot of peace and healing to me then.
The bible verse from 1 John 1:7-10 is also a great source of peace to me as it tells me of God's great promise to forgive me and cleanse me when I confess my sins to him.
1 Have mercy on me, God, according to your loving kindness.
According to the multitude of your tender mercies, blot out my transgressions.
2 Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity.
Cleanse me from my sin.
3 For I know my transgressions.
My sin is constantly before me.
4 Against you, and you only, I have sinned,
and done that which is evil in your sight,
so you may be proved right when you speak,
and justified when you judge.
5 Behold, I was born in iniquity.
My mother conceived me in sin.
6 Behold, you desire truth in the inward parts.
You teach me wisdom in the inmost place.
7 Purify me with hyssop, and I will be clean.
Wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
8 Let me hear joy and gladness,
that the bones which you have broken may rejoice.
9 Hide your face from my sins,
and blot out all of my iniquities.
10 Create in me a clean heart, O God.
Renew a right spirit within me.
11 Don’t throw me from your presence,
and don’t take your Holy Spirit from me.
12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation.
Uphold me with a willing spirit.
13 Then I will teach transgressors your ways.
Sinners will be converted to you.
14 Deliver me from the guilt of bloodshed, O God, the God of my salvation.
My tongue will sing aloud of your righteousness.
15 Lord, open my lips.
My mouth will declare your praise.
16 For you don’t delight in sacrifice, or else I would give it.
You have no pleasure in burnt offering.
17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit.
O God, you will not despise a broken and contrite heart.
18 Do well in your good pleasure to Zion.
Build the walls of Jerusalem.
19 Then you will delight in the sacrifices of righteousness,
in burnt offerings and in whole burnt offerings.
Then they will offer bulls on your altar.
Parable Of The Prodigal Son
11 He said, “A certain man had two sons. 12 The younger of them said to his father, ‘Father, give me my share of your property.’ So he divided his livelihood between them. 13 Not many days after, the younger son gathered all of this together and traveled into a far country. There he wasted his property with riotous living. 14 When he had spent all of it, there arose a severe famine in that country, and he began to be in need. 15 He went and joined himself to one of the citizens of that country, and he sent him into his fields to feed pigs. 16 He wanted to fill his belly with the pods that the pigs ate, but no one gave him any. 17 But when he came to himself, he said, ‘How many hired servants of my father’s have bread enough to spare, and I’m dying with hunger! 18 I will get up and go to my father, and will tell him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and in your sight. 19 I am no more worthy to be called your son. Make me as one of your hired servants.” ’ 20 “He arose and came to his father. But while he was still far off, his father saw him and was moved with compassion, and ran, fell on his neck, and kissed him. 21 The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and in your sight. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ 22 “But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring out the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet. 23 Bring the fattened calf, kill it, and let’s eat and celebrate; 24 for this, my son, was dead and is alive again. He was lost and is found.’ Then they began to celebrate. 25 “Now his elder son was in the field. As he came near to the house, he heard music and dancing. 26 He called one of the servants to him and asked what was going on. 27 He said to him, ‘Your brother has come, and your father has killed the fattened calf, because he has received him back safe and healthy.’ 28 But he was angry and would not go in. Therefore his father came out and begged him. 29 But he answered his father, ‘Behold, these many years I have served you, and I never disobeyed a commandment of yours, but you never gave me a goat, that I might celebrate with my friends. 30 But when this your son came, who has devoured your living with prostitutes, you killed the fattened calf for him.’ 31 “He said to him, ‘Son, you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours. 32 But it was appropriate to celebrate and be glad, for this, your brother, was dead, and is alive again. He was lost, and is found.’ ” (Luke 15:11-32)
7 But if we walk in the light as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son, cleanses us from all sin. 8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and righteous to forgive us the sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say that we haven’t sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us. (1 John 1:7-10)
Peace When In A Period Of Singleness
Before I met my husband, Joseph, I was single for a while. I was prepared to be single for the rest of my life. I was prepared to check myself into the best nursing home when I get old. I planned to focus on my career to serve the older population in my community and to provide for my family. There were times of loneliness when I would eat out by myself and do things on my own. During a time when most of my friends were getting married, having children and buying a house, I was just entering grad school. Being older than most people, I do not expect to meet my future husband there at all. During those times of singleness, I remembered sitting alone in my student apartment and reading the bible. I had a sense how I was still loved by God and how my connection to God is satisfying beyond my singleness. God was with me then. The joy I had when I read his word and pray to him, at that time as a single person, was sufficient. These verses here encouraged me and gave me peace during those times of singleness:
24 O LORD, how many are your works! In wisdom, you have made them all. The earth is full of your riches. 25 There is the sea, great and wide, in which are innumerable living things, both small and large animals. 26 There the ships go, and leviathan, whom you formed to play there. 27 These all wait for you, that you may give them their food in due season. 28 You give to them; they gather. You open your hand; they are satisfied with good. (Psalm 104:24–28)
25 Whom do I have in heaven? There is no one on earth whom I desire besides you. 26 My flesh and my heart fails, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. (Psalm 73:25-26)
Peace In A Period Of Uncertainty
It was year 2010. I have made peace with my family, repented of my backsliding ways and gone back to attending church. I sought God's direction for my life and I pleaded with God to use me again even though I had messed up part of my life. I was so broken by my backsliding that I was not sure if he would even want to use me anymore. During my prayer to him in the Chinese Garden, Singapore and reading the bible, I was filled with peace that God heard my prayer. A verse then stood out to me:
11 "For I know the thoughts that I think toward you,” says The LORD, “thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you hope and a future. 12 You shall call on me, and you shall go and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13 You shall seek me and find me, when you search for me with all your heart." (Jeremiah 29:11-13)
I was a nurse and I moved to a different hospital to work. Shortly after my interview and in the beginning of my career there, I was asked by the Director of Nursing to apply for grad school in US (it was common for some workplaces to fund the studies of their workers and in return their workers would sign a contract with them to work for a few more years). There were many other nurses who deserve that opportunity more than me but I reckoned then it was the best shot at a better future for me to provide more for my family and to get office hours in future. On one hand, I was asked to apply for the best nursing grad school in the world while having no promise that it would happen. I had to take IELTS English Tests (Speaking, writing and audio tests), CGFNS test (passed only at second attempt), GRE test, NCLEX exam (I had to fly to Hong Kong twice for it), among the other administrative grad school requirements like Essay for entry, conversion of previous degree to US standards, mailing by paper to US all the hard copies of my school certs. It was an expensive process as all those applications and tests require money. I took out a bank loan to finance part of that process. I was saving money during those times by eating instant noodles and oats for most of my lunches. When I finally got an acceptance letter in 2011 while contingent on my NCLEX passing, I was accepted into the specific grad school in US, my Director of Nursing called me to her office and told me face to face that she is so sorry that she tried very hard to fight for me for the funds to go for the studies but she met resistance. I was already mentally prepared that she would tell me that and so I was able to accept it and I was grateful for her efforts. She told me that they would try the next year again to fight for the funds, so I could defer the school acceptance. I was just following orders and attempting the best shot for my life and for my family's life at that point. During that period, some people told me that they think it would never really happen and that all my efforts are just in vain. Some of my church friends say that maybe God has prepared some other people for me to meet in the next year over there in US instead of now. Some of my Christian friends encouraged me that God is still in control and his plan for my life is the best. What comforted me during that period of great uncertainty is this verse below:
15 My times are in your hand. Deliver me from the hand of my enemies, and from those who persecute me. (Psalm 31:15)
28 We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, for those who are called according to his purpose. (Romans 8:28)
I surrendered the outcome to God, knowing that either staying in Singapore or going to US for grad school will work out fine. Another year passed. It was a few days just after I got back from my second trip to Hong Kong for the NCLEX exam (as the first time there was a name sequence error and they did not allow me to take the test. I got an email that I passed the NCLEX, while I was out in Vivo City, Zara, shopping with a close friend. I texted the Director of Nursing then about the good news and then she called me, with good news that the funds were just approved. That timing was amazing. My friend celebrated with me and it was then that I felt a cosmic change in my life that it would change drastically in an out of the world way. It was mid or late August then, in 2012. Within a week in early September, grad school starts. I had only a week to pack up everything, apply for visa, find student housing and say goodbye to my family. During that time, due to the short notice for the student visa application, I was not able to get the visa on time for the first flight and so the flight had to be postponed by a few days. I was very anxious if I would be allowed officially into the US for the studies. During that time, besides having friends praying for me, reading Abiding in Christ by Andrew Murray was a comfort to me. The bible verses that brought me peace and calmed my anxiety down were:
28 Come to me, all you who labor and are heavily burdened, and I will give you rest. (Matthew 11:28)
4 Remain in me, and I in you. As the branch can’t bear fruit by itself unless it remains in the vine, so neither can you, unless you remain in me. (John 15:4)
Jesus' words comforted me that he is able to give me that peace and he is able to help me to be fruitful if I remain in him.
Prayer For Peace Of Mind
Here is a prayer for peace of mind that you are welcome to pray along as a guide:
Sometimes it's really hard for me to feel where you are, especially with what I am going through right now. However, your word and your Spirit tell me that you are with me and you are always with me. I praise you as you are the Creator and you are the giver of true peace. Thank you for forgiving my sins through your Son, Jesus Christ. Please help me to walk closely with you. Please help me as I read your word to guide me in my life. Please give me your peace that fills me beyond all understanding. I open my heart and my life to your guidance. Please help me to be strong and continue to trust and obey you.
In Jesus' name I pray, amen.
Thanks for reading this post this far. I am continuing in my faith journey with God in my current life and I hope you would continue to read his word and let God's word bring you comfort and peace in your difficult times. To read more about bible verses about peace, click here.
Bible version: the public domain World English Bible (WEB) has been used throughout this post. The WEB translation of "Yahweh" has been changed to "the LORD" which is more familiar to most readers.